Investigating the Application of Social Sustainability: A Case Study in the Egyptian Retailing Sector
Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32919
Investigating the Application of Social Sustainability: A Case Study in the Egyptian Retailing Sector

Authors: Lobna Hafez, Eman Elakkad


Sustainability is no longer a choice for firms. To achieve sustainable supply chain, all three dimensions of sustainability should be considered. Unlike the economic and environmental aspects, social sustainability has been rarely given attention. The problem surrounding social sustainability and employees’ welfare in Egypt is complex and remains unsolved. The aim of this study is to qualitatively assess the current level of application of social sustainability in the retailing sector in Egypt through using the social sustainability indicators identified in the literature. The purpose of this investigation is to gain knowledge about the complexity of the system involved. A case study is conducted on one of the largest retailers in Egypt. Data were collected through semi-structured interviews with managers and employees to determine the level of application and identify the major obstacles affecting the social sustainability in the retailing context. The work developed gives insights about the details and complexities of the application of social sustainability in developing countries, from the retailing perspective. The outcomes of this study will help managers to understand the enablers of social sustainability and will direct them to methods of sound implementation.

Keywords: Egypt, retailing sector, social sustainability, sustainability.

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 526


[1] Connelly BL, Ketchen DJ, Slater SF. Toward a “theoretical toolbox” for sustainability research in marketing. J Acad Mark Sci. 2011;39(1):86–100.
[2] Burchell, J.; Cook, J. Stakeholder dialogue and organisational learning: Changing relationships between companies and NGOs. Bus. Ethics 2007, 17, 35–46.
[3] Ruiz-Real JL, Uribe-Toril J, Gázquez-Abad JC, Valenciano J de P. Sustainability and retail: Analysis of global research. Sustain. 2018;11(1).
[4] Wilson, M. Corporate sustainability: what is it and where does it come from? Ivey Business Journal. 2003; March/April, pp. 1-6.
[5] Maxey, Larch. Can we sustain sustainable agriculture? Learning from small-scale producer-suppliers in Canada and UK. The Geographical Journal. 2006; 172: 3, 230–244.
[6] Zhu, Q., Sarkis, J., & Lai, K. Confirmation of a measurement model for green supply chain management practices implementation. International Journal of Production Economics. 2008; 111(2), 261– 273.
[7] Maxwell D, Sheate W, van der Vorst R. Functional and systems aspects of the sustainable product and service development approach for industry. J Clean Prod. 2006;14(17):1466–79.
[8] Banihashemi TA, Fei J, Chen PS-L. Exploring the relationship between reverse logistics and sustainability performance. Mod Supply Chain Res Appl. 2019;1(1):2–27..
[9] Seuring S. A review of modeling approaches for sustainable supply chain management. Decis Support Syst (Internet). 2013;54(4):1513–20. Available from:
[10] Banihashemi TA, Fei J, Chen PS-L. Exploring the relationship between reverse logistics and sustainability performance. Mod Supply Chain Res Appl. 2019;1(1):2–27.
[11] Tang C. Socially responsible supply chains in emerging markets: some research opportunities. J of Oper Mgt.
[12] Wood DJ. Corporate social performance revisited. Corp Soc Responsib. 1991;16(4):59–86.
[13] Dixon R, Mousa GA, Woodhead A. The role of environmental initiatives in encouraging companies to engage in environmental reporting. Eur Manag J. 2005;23(6):702–16.
[14] Bekele A, Bosona T, Nordmark I, Gebresenbet G, Ljungberg D. Assessing the Sustainability of Food Retail Business: The Case of Konsum Värmland, Sweden. J Serv Sci Manag. 2012;05(04):373–85.
[15] Mehan A, Soflaei F, Costa MJRC da, Roseta F, Lages JP, Costa SC da. Social Sustainability in Urban Context: Concepts, Definitions and Principles. 2017;293–9. Available from:
[16] Caulfield J, Polèse M, Stren R, Polese M. The Social Sustainability of Cities: Diversity and the Management of Change. Vol. 27, Canadian Public Policy / Analyse de Politiques. 2001. 381 p
[17] Littig B, Grießler E. Social sustainability: A catchword between political pragmatism and social theory. Int J Sustain Dev. 2005;8(1–2):65–79.
[18] Laguna JM. Institutional politics, power constellations, and urban social sustainability: A comparative-historical analysis. ProQuest Diss Theses (Internet). 2014;324. Available from:
[19] Rasouli AH, Kumarasuriyar DA. The Social Dimention of Sustainability: Towards Some Definitions and Analysis. J Soc Sci Policy Implic. 2016;4(2).
[20] Yin, R.K. Case study research: Design and methods (2nd ed). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.1994.
[21] Dhanda KK. Case Study in the Evolution of Sustainability: Baxter International Inc. J Bus Ethics. 2013;112(4):667–84.
[22] Székely F, Knirsch M. Responsible leadership and corporate social responsibility: Metrics for sustainable performance. Eur Manag J. 2005;23(6):628–47.
[23] Erol I, Cakar N, Erel D, Sari R. Sustainability in the Turkish retailing industry. Sustain Dev. 2009;17(1):49–67.